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Grassley’s Questioning Of Wray Suggests Biden Scandal Is The Tip Of The Deep-State Iceberg

Sen. Chuck Grassley’s questioning of FBI Director Christopher Wray during Thursday’s Judiciary Committee hearing, when considered in conjunction with the details provided by FBI whistleblowers, is suggestive of an even bigger Hunter Biden scandal.

Last week, Grassley revealed that “multiple FBI whistleblowers, including those in senior positions,” claimed the “Washington Field Office assistant special agent in charge Timothy Thibault and other FBI officials … ‘falsely portray[ed] as disinformation evidence acquired from multiple sources that provided the FBI derogatory information related to Hunter Biden’s financial and foreign business activities, even though some of that information had already been or could be verified.’” The whistleblowers also told the Iowa Republican senator that “in August of 2020, FBI supervisory intelligence analyst Brian Auten opened an assessment, which was used by a team of agents at FBI headquarters to improperly discredit and falsely claim that derogatory information about Biden’s activities was disinformation, causing investigative activity and sourcing to be shut down.”

Grassley further revealed that “the FBI headquarters team allegedly placed their assessment findings in a restricted access subfolder, effectively flagging sources and derogatory evidence related to Hunter Biden as disinformation while shielding the justification for such findings from scrutiny.”

In revealing news of the whistleblowers’ claims, Grassley did not further detail the sources of the derogatory information. However, in questioning Wray during Thursday’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, four exchanges proved intriguing — and potentially insightful.

1. Was a Second U.S. Attorney’s Office’s Evidence Buried?

After using his opening statement to review the whistleblowers’ allegations, Grassley asked Wray whether “when the FBI receives a potential criminal investigation relating to a matter subject to information and prosecution by a U.S. attorney, is it the FBI’s standard practice to share that information with the relevant U.S. attorney’s office?”

Wray replied in the affirmative, noting that it is his expectation that when a particular U.S. attorney’s office and the related relevant FBI field office have the lead on an investigation, if other U.S. attorneys’ offices come across information that is relevant to that investigation, those tips and leads will be passed on to the lead office. 

This line of questioning ran parallel to The Federalist’s reporting last week that noted that while the U.S. attorney’s office in Delaware pursued its investigation of Hunter Biden’s foreign business dealings, then-Attorney General William Barr had directed the Pittsburgh U.S. attorney to review material purporting to show Hunter Biden’s involvement in criminal business dealings in Ukraine. 

While little is publicly known about the work of the Pittsburgh U.S. attorney’s office, shortly after Biden’s election, the New York Times ran a hit piece on former Pittsburgh U.S. Attorney Scott Brady, presenting him as a Trump partisan, purportedly based “on interviews with five current and former law enforcement officials and others with knowledge of F.B.I. interactions with the Justice Department.” Among other things, the Times reported that Brady sought “to take aggressive steps,” including having the FBI interview a list of potential witnesses. The Times’ unnamed sources claimed that in response to the Pittsburgh U.S. attorney’s investigation, FBI agents “found ways to ostensibly satisfy Mr. Brady.”

Revisiting the Times article and the claims of these unnamed sources in light of the whistleblowers’ claims suggests FBI headquarters either improperly withheld information or presented inaccurate information to the U.S. attorney’s office in Pittsburgh and possibly also Delaware. And now, Grassley is questioning the FBI director on how evidence from one U.S. attorney’s office should be handled when another office is running lead. That question seems suggestive of the possibility that the evidence buried by FBI headquarters came from the Pittsburgh U.S. attorney’s office or the related FBI field office and was never shared with the Delaware U.S. attorney’s office.

Brady declined to comment to The Federalist and Grassley’s office has not yet responded to a request for comment as of publication time.

2. Was There a Foreign Human Source?

A second line of Grassley’s inquiry during Thursday’s hearing raises further questions about the type of evidence purportedly buried by FBI headquarters. 

“I would like to know if the FBI received information that foreign persons had evidence of improper or unlawful financial payments paid to elected officials or other politically exposed persons would that pose a nation security concern?” Grassley asked the FBI director. And what steps should the FBI take “to vet or more fully investigate improper or unlawful money paid to elected officials and other politically exposed persons?” Grassley inquired. 

Given Grassley’s focus on the whistleblower information during the hearing and the similarity between the hypothetical posed and the allegations swirling around Hunter Biden, this line of inquiry suggests FBI headquarters may have wrongly classified a foreign human source with evidence about Hunter Biden as disinformation and did so without any vetting or investigation. And having Wray state for the record, as he did, that the FBI would look at such information “very closely” and “very seriously” through the FBI’s maligned foreign influence teams, and with the potential involvement of public corruption resources, seems a purposeful tact for Grassley to make as he moves the whistleblowers’ claims move forward, especially if the evidence shows that the agents presented with the derogatory information about Hunter did not properly address the evidence. 

3. How Was the Derogatory Information on Hunter Biden Branded Disinformation?

Grassley also pushed Wray on the question of disinformation. Again, while his questions were posed generically, the whistleblowers’ claims provide an interesting context to the discussion.

What criteria does the FBI use to evaluate whether evidence “is or isn’t disinformation”? the Iowa senator asked. 

Here, Wray responded that “when it comes to disinformation, we’re not out there investigating whether or not information we see floating around is truthful or false in the first instance.” Rather, the FBI’s focus is on whether “there’s a foreign adversary trying to push information and from there we look into,” Wray explained. “When it comes to disinformation and defensive briefing, for example,” Wray continued, “there is an inter-agency process, that is [Office of the Director of National Intelligence] coordinated because a lot of this information comes not from the FBI but from other intelligence agencies, or in some cases from foreign allies,” the FBI director explained.

That testimony raises numerous red flags when considered against the whistleblowers’ claims that evidence about Hunter Biden was wrongly labeled disinformation by FBI headquarters. First, just from Wray’s testimony, it appears that the FBI agents would not be the appropriate ones to deem evidence “disinformation.”

Second, given the “inter-agency process” mentioned, one wonders if FBI headquarters reached out to any of the other intelligence agencies to discuss the derogatory information about Hunter Biden and if so, did another intelligence agency brand it disinformation? Third, was this derogatory evidence ever shared with the head of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, John Ratcliffe, or if not, why not? 

The whistleblowers’ allegations were bad enough before, but now that Wray has explained the inter-agency involvement in assessing disinformation and in providing defensive briefings, the scandal could be even worse, if, for instance, FBI headquarters marked the sources as disinformation without sharing the intel with the other agencies as seems the proper protocol from Wray’s testimony.

4. Does the FBI Have a Culture of Retaliation?

A final line of questioning of interest focused on ensuring the whistleblowers would not be retaliated against. Here, it is interesting to note that Grassley stated that during his June telephone conversation with the FBI director they had “discussed the need to protect whistleblowers that had approached my office.” Grassley then thanked Wray for his commitment to preventing retaliatory conduct against whistleblowers, before asking two follow-up questions. 

“Do you agree any retaliatory conduct against whistleblowers must be disciplined?” Grassley asked first. 

Wray agreed that any conduct against whistleblowers was “unacceptable” and that the department had a “number of mechanisms” in place to protect whistleblowers. 

Grassley then asked for Wray to commit “that the FBI won’t take any action to determine who the whistleblowers are.” Wray again confirmed the bureau would “be scrupulous in our rules” and condemned “in the strongest possible terms any prospect of retaliation against whistleblowers.”

That Grassley had Wray publicly reaffirm his commitment to protect the whistleblowers and condemn any possible retaliation raises the question of whether the FBI has a culture of retaliation. That might explain why the agents who came forward to Grassley about the alleged burying of evidence against Hunter Biden did so only within the last two months, when the charged misconduct occurred back in 2020. Grassley may also be seeking to assure other would-be whistleblowers that he will safeguard their identity and hold the FBI director responsible for guaranteeing they are not retaliated against.

With this guarantee now public, the question for the “patriots working their tails off,” as Sen. John Kennedy called the FBI agents not implicated in wrongdoing during yesterday’s hearing, is whether they will come forward to out the bad apples. If not, are they really patriots working their tails off? Or are they really just trying to save their hides. 


Margot Cleveland is The Federalist’s senior legal correspondent. She is also a contributor to National Review Online, the Washington Examiner, Aleteia, and Townhall.com, and has been published in the Wall Street Journal and USA Today. Cleveland is a lawyer and a graduate of the Notre Dame Law School, where she earned the Hoynes Prize—the law school’s highest honor. She later served for nearly 25 years as a permanent law clerk for a federal appellate judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Cleveland is a former full-time university faculty member and now teaches as an adjunct from time to time. As a stay-at-home homeschooling mom of a young son with cystic fibrosis, Cleveland frequently writes on cultural issues related to parenting and special-needs children. Cleveland is on Twitter at @ProfMJCleveland. The views expressed here are those of Cleveland in her private capacity.

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All FBI Agents Must Blow Their Whistles Or They’ll Be Complicit In Bureau’s Politicization

Sen. Chuck Grassley’s office confirmed to The Federalist that the multiple FBI whistleblowers charging misconduct related to the Hunter Biden investigation only came forward in the last two months. While the existence of these new whistleblowers proves promising, other FBI agents with knowledge of misconduct or political bias must stop hiding behind the chain of command and start blowing their own whistles. 

“Multiple FBI whistleblowers, including those in senior positions” informed the Iowa Republican senator that “Washington Field Office assistant special agent in charge Timothy Thibault and other FBI officials … ‘falsely portray[ed] as disinformation evidence acquired from multiple sources that provided the FBI derogatory information related to Hunter Biden’s financial and foreign business activities, even though some of that information had already been or could be verified.’”

The whistleblowers further charged that “in August of 2020, FBI supervisory intelligence analyst Brian Auten opened an assessment, which was used by a team of agents at FBI headquarters to improperly discredit and falsely claim that derogatory information about Biden’s activities was disinformation, causing investigative activity and sourcing to be shut down.” “The FBI headquarters team allegedly placed their assessment findings in a restricted access subfolder, effectively flagging sources and derogatory evidence related to Hunter Biden as disinformation while shielding the justification for such findings from scrutiny,” Grassley revealed.

The significance of these developments cannot be overstated, for several reasons. First, the whistleblowers accuse supervisory bureau officials — not merely low-level line agents — with manipulating evidence related to an investigation of the son of the president of the United States. The ongoing investigation also implicates the president and his brother in the pay-to-play scandal of influence-peddling.

That reality alone should shock the core of the bureau, but there is more. The whistleblowers’ charges, when read in light of FBI leaks to the Washington Post, suggest that “FBI Headquarters either improperly withheld information or presented inaccurate information to the U.S. attorney’s office in Pittsburgh and possibly also Delaware,” which were tasked with investigating Hunter Biden. 

Further, by burying evidence about Hunter Biden, which at the time included the laptop he had abandoned at a Delaware repair shop, the FBI agents concealed a dangerous national security risk that both the intelligence community and Joe Biden needed to know, namely that Hunter believed Russians had stolen a second laptop that contained similarly compromising material. 

The new information revealed by the FBI whistleblowers exposes yet a further scandal, which Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., highlighted in a letter he dispatched to Attorney General Merrick Garland, FBI Director Christopher Wray, and DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz last week. In his letter, Johnson noted that while he was investigating Hunter Biden’s questionable business dealings, the FBI provided him and Grassley with a supposed briefing on August 6, 2020. That briefing “was not specific” and was “unconnected” to their investigation, Johnson noted, and he and Grassley had “always assumed [it] was a set up to intentionally discredit [their] ongoing work into Hunter Biden’s extensive foreign financial entanglements.” 

In fact, as Johnson highlighted in his letter, leakers from the FBI fed the fact of the briefing to the Washington Post. The Post then framed the briefing as “an extensive effort by the [FBI] to alert members of Congress … that they faced a risk of being used to further Russia’s attempt to influence the election’s outcome.” That spin worked to falsely portray Grassley and Johnson’s investigation into Hunter Biden’s foreign financial dealings as corrupted by Russian disinformation.

Johnson’s letter to the DOJ, FBI, and OIG concisely captured the significance of these facts and the horror of the scandal: “If these recent whistleblower revelations are true, it would strongly suggest that the FBI’s August 6, 2020, briefing was indeed a targeted effort to intentionally undermine a Congressional investigation. The FBI being weaponized against two sitting chairmen of U.S. Senate committees with constitutional oversight responsibilities would be one of the greatest episodes of Executive Branch corruption in American history.”

The Whole FBI Owns This

The FBI scandal does not end there, however, and concerns not merely the alleged misconduct by a few in the upper echelon of the bureau. Rather, the fact that the whistleblowers, including “those in senior positions” of the FBI, are only now coming forward to expose the malfeasance they witnessed — even though the investigation into Hunter Biden has been ongoing since 2018 and the alleged spiking of the evidence occurred in 2020 — renders the scandal owned by the entire agency and every member of the organization. 

The failure of other FBI agents and “those in senior positions” to object to the shameful politicization of the bureau finds its root in the Russia collusion hoax, with agents ignoring the misconduct by the bureau’s leaders, such as Director James Comey, FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, FBI Deputy Assistant Director Peter Strzok, and FBI Special Counsel Lisa Page. FBI Special Agent William Barnett, in a detailed interview with former U.S. Attorney Jeff Jensen, revealed both the breadth of the bureau’s partisan impropriety and the reticence of apolitical agents to challenge their bosses.

Barnett, who served as the FBI’s case agent in the investigation of former White House National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, spoke with then-U.S. Attorney Jensen after then-Attorney General William Barr tasked Jensen with reviewing the Flynn case. As The Federalist previously reported, Barnett “told Department of Justice (DOJ) investigators that the handling of the probes troubled him so much that he threatened to quit working on it in one case, and threatened to go to the Inspector General in another.”

A summary of Barnett’s interview noted that he believed “there was never any basis for the bizarre ‘collusion’ theory the agency and the special counsel relentlessly pursued, to the point that agents made jokes about how they could take any piece of information and claim it was evidence of collusion.” Barnett also believed the Special Counsel Office “pursued Flynn simply as a means to ‘get Trump’ and viewed FBI investigators as a ‘speed bump’ slowing down the work of the attorneys leading the inquisition.”

Jensen’s comprehensive summary of his interview with Barnett revealed many more extensive problems dating from 2016 and through Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation. But it wasn’t until September 2020 when Barr initiated a review of the Flynn case by a U.S. attorney outside of D.C. that Barnett’s firsthand experience became known to those willing to address the corruption. 

The now-former attorney general did just that when he moved to dismiss the criminal case against Flynn, concluding the FBI’s questioning of Flynn that served as the basis for the criminal charge “was untethered to, and unjustified by, the FBI’s counterintelligence investigation.” The federal judge presiding over the Flynn case refused to dismiss the case, though, and with the legal wrangling continuing past the 2020 election, prompted outgoing President Donald Trump to pardon Flynn. 

Beyond the numerous FBI improprieties that occurred during the Crossfire Hurricane and Mueller investigations — including high-level leaks by agents — the interview of Barnett revealed a follow-the-marching-orders mentality that cannot continue if agents want to restore integrity to the bureau. 

“While Barnett questioned the investigative theory, he did not think at the time the investigation was illegal, particularly due to the oversight by attorneys (i.e., CLINESMITH) and the direction being given by top FBI officials,” the summary of Barnett’s interview stated, with Barnett noting he “was willing to follow instructions being given by the Deputy Director as long as it was not a violation of law.” 

Turn the Tide

The last two months seem to suggest a potential change in attitude, with FBI whistleblowers willing to work with outsiders committed to reform. 

In addition to whistleblowers exposing the alleged misconduct related to the Biden family, they have also alerted Grassley to the FBI’s politicizing of election crimes and campaign finance investigations. And with whistleblowers also alerting Ohio Republican Rep. Jim Jordan that “FBI leaders are instructing agents to reclassify cases to bolster the Biden administration’s narrative that ‘domestic violent extremism’ is a major threat,” there is hope that the dedicated men and women of the bureau want to restore integrity to the agency.

It may be difficult for FBI agents, trained to trust the hierarchy, to reboot their reticence, but recent events establish that the FBI leadership cannot right itself. What the FBI needs, then, to rehabilitate itself is a cavalcade of whistleblowers exposing the rot within the bureau. Every agent at every level must join the few brave whistleblowers who have come forward. 

If, knowing what they do now about DOJ and FBI leadership’s inability to clean the political mess, agents remain mum, they will be complicit in the scandal, and Americans will no longer distinguish between the hardworking men and women of the FBI and the supposedly few bad apples — we will view the entire bureau as bad.


Margot Cleveland is The Federalist’s senior legal correspondent. She is also a contributor to National Review Online, the Washington Examiner, Aleteia, and Townhall.com, and has been published in the Wall Street Journal and USA Today. Cleveland is a lawyer and a graduate of the Notre Dame Law School, where she earned the Hoynes Prize—the law school’s highest honor. She later served for nearly 25 years as a permanent law clerk for a federal appellate judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Cleveland is a former full-time university faculty member and now teaches as an adjunct from time to time. As a stay-at-home homeschooling mom of a young son with cystic fibrosis, Cleveland frequently writes on cultural issues related to parenting and special-needs children. Cleveland is on Twitter at @ProfMJCleveland. The views expressed here are those of Cleveland in her private capacity.

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Grassley: FBI Engaged in ‘Political Interference’ in Hunter Biden Cover-Up

During this week’s broadcast of Fox News Channel’s “Sunday Night in America,” Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) weighed in on whistleblowers within the FBI, alleging that top brass were working to discredit allegations against Hunter Biden, son of President Joe Biden.

Grassley, who penned a letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray and Attorney General Merrick Garland saying that sources within the bureau showed him evidence of attempts to downplay or discredit information about Hunter Biden, said the effort to label reports about the younger Biden as “disinformation” was “political interference” by the FBI.

“We had concrete information about of lot of things of Hunter Biden has done, and he stopped that and labeled it as disinformation,” Grassley stated. “Now, that is political interference in the FBI. And it is going to cause people to lose credibility in the FBI, and every citizen ought to have the most confidence you could ever have an agency like the FBI.”

“Now, we’re going to have … Director Wray before our committee on Thursday, and he is going to get a lot of questions about this,” he continued. “And he ought to know that he is going to have to show us concrete information and plan that he is going to be able to change this culture in the FBI where there is a power or party makes a decision of whether or not investigations go ahead. It has got to be no political bias whatsoever in any of these decisions.”

Follow Trent Baker on Twitter @MagnifiTrent

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Backflip: Trusted Aide Kate Bedingfield Reverses Decision to Bail on Joe Biden

She was in, she was out, and now she’s back in again. Confused yet? In a last-minute change of mind, White House communications director Kate Bedingfield has reversed her decision to leave her job.

Bedingfield had previously said she would step down at the end of July after years advising President Joe Biden, serving him as communications director when he was vice president.

She also joined Biden’s 2020 campaign as the deputy campaign manager and director of communications.

Initial news of Bedingfield’s departure broke after White House press secretary Jen Psaki also left her position, which sparked additional departures, as Breitbart News reported.

But this week, UPI reports she backflipped under pressure to reconsider from Biden and Chief of Staff Ron Klain.

“After much thought, discussion and reflection, I’ve decided to stay,” Bedingfield emailed colleagues on Friday, as reported by CNN and the New York Times. “I’m not done here and there is so much more good work to do with all of you.

She continued: “I couldn’t be happier and more excited about this awesome — if admittedly last-minute! — development. The work is too important and too energizing and I have a lot of gas left in the tank.”

Klain had high praise for Bedingfield’s performance as White House communications director.

“Without Kate Bedingfield’s talent and tenacity, Donald Trump might still be in the White House, the Rescue Plan and the Infrastructure Law might still be unrealized goals, and Ketanji Brown Jackson might not be sitting on the Supreme Court,” Klain said in a statement.

WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 13: White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki (L) and White House Communications Director Kate Bedingfield (R) wait for President Joe Biden to deliver remarks on the COVID-19 response and vaccination program in the Rose Garden of the White House on May 13, 2021 in Washington, DC. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced today that fully vaccinated people will no longer need to wear masks or socially distance for indoor and outdoor activities in most settings. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

File/White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki (L) and White House Communications Director Kate Bedingfield (R) wait for President Joe Biden to deliver remarks on the COVID-19 response and vaccination program in the Rose Garden of the White House on May 13, 2021 in Washington, DC. (Alex Wong/Getty)

Praise for Bedingfield defied her performance when Biden was vice president and she served as his point person on the issue of Hunter Biden’s corrupt ties to the Ukrainian energy company Burisma.

She notably forcefully lied about the authenticity of Hunter Biden’s laptop during the 2020 campaign.

Questions about Hunter Biden’s corruption, she argued before a presidential debate, were only “amplifying Russian misinformation.”

Follow Simon Kent on Twitter: or e-mail to: skent@breitbart.com

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‘Winter Is Coming’: Republicans Prepare Biden Family Business Investigation Storm

Republicans are preparing to investigate Hunter, James, and President Joe Biden’s history of shady business deals after the GOP likely reclaims the House in the midterm elections.

Plans have already begun to investigate the Biden family business. Demand letters are being written and strategies developed to ensure Hunter, Joe, and James Biden are held accountable for the misdeeds and falsehoods perpetrated on American citizens, which includes the establishment media’s suppression of the “Laptop From Hell” leading up to the 2020 presidential election.

The investigation will undoubtedly focus on Hunter and James’s business deals, which Joe Biden and his staff have claimed at least seven times that the president has not been involved in. Yet 17 pieces of evidence show Joe Biden has played an influential role in his son Hunter and brother James’s activities.

According to a Harris poll, 58 percent of voters believe that Joe Biden has played a role in his family’s business. Sixty percent say Hunter Biden has sold “influence and access” to the president.

Some of the House members leading the charge are Oversight Committee ranking member Rep. James Comer (R-KY), GOP leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), Judiciary Committee ranking member Jim Jordan (R-OH), Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA), and Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL). The focus of the investigation will be on five fronts:

  1. Hunter’s influence peddling while Joe Biden was vice president.
  2. Family profit derived from the influence peddling.
  3. Continued business deals after Joe Biden became a civilian.
  4. Money collected by the Biden family despite no “discernible work” performed.
  5. False statements that Joe Biden never spoke to his family about the business deals.

“We’re going to spend a lot of time in the first three, four months having investigation hearings and then we’re going to be very active in the subcommittee process… I’m going to bring the Oversight Committee back to what its original intent was,” Comer told Politico in July. Comer added he’s already strategizing about who the top Republicans will be to join him in the investigative effort.

Comer also explained who and what will be the focus on the investigation. “There are decisions that Joe Biden’s making every day in this White House that are questionable, that go against what I think the majority of Americans would expect from the White House,” Comer said, “and yet, these decisions are made, in my opinion, because he was compromised by his son’s shady business dealings.”

Firebrand Gaetz is also focused on the investigation. On Thursday, Gaetz slammed Assistant Attorney General for the Department of Justice’s National Security Division, Matthew Olsen, for not being willing to answer whether “Hunter Biden [is] a national security threat.”

“Winter is coming,” Gaetz emphatically stated. “We’re going to be in the majority, and then you’re going to have to answer these questions for the country.”

On Wednesday, Comer issued a demand letter to Hunter Biden’s wealth adviser to turn over “suspicious” bank records that are connected to the Biden family business schemes. Comer’s request is only a request, but after November, Comer will have the opportunity to compel Hunter’s wealth adviser to answer the demand letter.

Comer’s letter specifically requested information connected to 150 flagged wire transactions by U.S. banks between Hunter and James Biden. Comer suspects the wire transfers are linked to Hunter’s business accounts under Prewitt’s management. Hunter’s bank accounts are related to his corrupt businesses: Owasco PC, Owasco LLC, Skaneateles, and Rosemont Seneca Advisors. It should be noted Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) told CBS News in April that James and Hunter Biden were both directly paid by Chinese entities and promised retainer fees for their China work, receiving in total $165,000.

Grassley is not the only senator alarmed about the Biden family business. Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI), has demanded Joe Biden’s top law enforcement officer, Attorney General Merrick Garland, appoint a special counsel to provide a degree of separation between Biden’s administration and the probe. Legal experts have stated a special counsel is necessary because Joe Biden has denied any wrongdoing by Hunter and may have influenced the ongoing investigation.

Johnson has been particularly focused on the media’s role in covering up the Biden family scheme. “They covered it up,” Johnson told Fox News Channel’s “Sunday Morning Futures,” “and as a result, they got Joe Biden elected; now they continue to cover up for him. But this is troubling. Now, we have actual bank records that verify what we reported. … the laptop is obviously a treasure-trove of additional corroborating evidence as well.”

As Republicans look to reclaim at least one chamber of Congress, Joe Biden’s team has refused to answer questions about the family’s business dealings on at least 11 occasions. “I am not going to talk about alleged materials on a laptop. It’s not happening,” White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre has repeatedly said.

“A Republican majority will be committed to uncovering the facts the Democrats, Big Tech and the legacy media have suppressed,” they added.

Follow Wendell Husebø on Twitter and Gettr @WendellHusebø. He is the author of Politics of Slave Morality. 

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White House Again Refuses to Say if Hunter Biden Has Divested Stake in Chinese Equity Firm

The White House on Thursday again dodged a question about whether President Joe Biden’s son Hunter Biden has divested from his ten percent stake in a Chinese equity firm.

“I would refer you to his representative, that’s not something I can speak from – speak about from the podium,” White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said during the daily briefing on Thursday, when asked by a reporter if the president’s son had actually divested his shares in the firm.

Recent Chinese business records show that Hunter Biden’s company Skaneateles is still a ten percent owner of the Chinese investment firm BHR Partners, even though Hunter Biden’s lawyers have said he divested from his business venture.

That contrasts with a statement from Hunter Biden’s lawyer, who told the New York Times in November that his client “no longer holds any interest, directly or indirectly, in either BHR or Skaneateles.”

But the White House continues to dodge questions about Hunter Biden’s foreign business deals, and the president’s claim that his son never made money from China.

In 2018 and 2020, Breitbart senior contributor and Government Accountability Institute President Peter Schweizer exposed in his books Secret Empires and Profiles in Corruption how Hunter Biden and Joe Biden flew aboard Air Force Two in 2013 to China before Hunter’s firm inked a $1.5 billion deal with a subsidiary of the Chinese government’s Bank of China just 10 days after the trip.

Schweizer’s work also uncovered the Biden family’s other vast and lucrative foreign deals and cronyism.

On at least ten occasions, White House officials repeatedly say they are unable to answer questions about Hunter Biden’s foreign business deals from the podium.

Breitbart political editor Emma-Jo Morris’s investigative work on the Hunter Biden “laptop from hell” also captured international headlines when she, along with Miranda Devine, revealed Joe Biden was intimately involved in Hunter’s businesses, appearing to even have a 10 percent stake in a company the scion formed with officials at the highest levels of the CCP.

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DOJ May Have Obstructed Important Biden Corruption Investigations Out Of Pittsburgh And Delaware

The recent charge leveled by multiple whistleblowers that FBI headquarters falsely labeled verifiable evidence of wrongdoing by Hunter Biden “disinformation” raises the specter that agents also impeded the separate investigations run by the Pittsburgh and Delaware U.S. attorneys’ offices.

On Monday, Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, announced that “multiple FBI whistleblowers, including those in senior positions” had accused Washington Field Office assistant special agent in charge Timothy Thibault and other FBI officials of “falsely portray[ing] as disinformation evidence acquired from multiple sources that provided the FBI derogatory information related to Hunter Biden’s financial and foreign business activities, even though some of that information had already been or could be verified.”

The whistleblowers, Grassley explained, had further claimed that “in August of 2020, FBI supervisory intelligence analyst Brian Auten opened an assessment, which was used by a team of agents at FBI headquarters to improperly discredit and falsely claim that derogatory information about Biden’s activities was disinformation, causing investigative activity and sourcing to be shut down.” “The FBI headquarters team allegedly placed their assessment findings in a restricted access subfolder, effectively flagging sources and derogatory evidence related to Hunter Biden as disinformation while shielding the justification for such findings from scrutiny,” according to Grassley.

Conflicting Stories

This explosive revelation conflicts with the storyline leaked by law enforcement officials to the New York Times shortly after Joe Biden’s election — just as news of the investigation into the financial dealings of his son reached a fever pitch.

Soon after Hunter Biden disclosed that the Delaware U.S. attorney’s office was investigating him and had served multiple subpoenas on him and his business associates, the Times published a story discussing the separate investigation run out of the Pittsburgh U.S. attorney’s office. 

“As federal investigators in Delaware were examining the finances of Hunter Biden during his father’s campaign for president, a similar inquiry ramped up this year in Pittsburgh, fueled by materials delivered by President Trump’s personal lawyer Rudolph W. Giuliani,” the Times article opened. “Attorney General William P. Barr had asked the top federal prosecutor in Pittsburgh, Scott W. Brady, to accept and vet any information that Mr. Giuliani had on the Biden family, including Hunter Biden,” the December 14, 2020, article continued, claiming that “Brady hosted Mr. Giuliani for a nearly four-hour meeting in late January to discuss his materials.”

The Times article then proceeded to paint the then-Pittsburgh U.S. attorney as a partisan hack and, relying on unnamed sources, claimed that Barr’s decision to direct Brady to oversee an “intake process for information about Ukraine to ‘assess its provenance and its credibility,’” was “highly unusual because prosecutors in Delaware had already been scrutinizing Hunter Biden for more than a year.” 

Barr made clear at the time, however, that investigators had to be careful about any information originating from Ukraine because “there are a lot of agendas in the Ukraine, a lot of crosscurrents.” “We can’t take anything we received from Ukraine at face value,” Barr stressed. And the Times — while spinning the narrative that there was something nefarious about Barr’s decision to task Brady with oversight of information provided by Giuliani, claiming “the arrangement immediately raised alarms within the F.B.I. and the Justice Department” — even acknowledged in its article that Barr “has farmed out other politically sensitive investigations to trusted U.S. attorneys outside Washington.”

Then, relying “on interviews with five current and former law enforcement officials and others with knowledge of F.B.I. interactions with the Justice Department,” the Times reported that Brady sought “to take aggressive steps,” including having the FBI interview a list of potential witnesses, which supposedly “prompted a tense confrontation with F.B.I. officials at the bureau’s headquarters in Washington.” 

Significantly, the Times reported that “the F.B.I. viewed the investigative steps into Mr. Biden that Mr. Brady sought as unwarranted because the Delaware inquiry involving money laundering had fizzled out and because they were skeptical of Mr. Giuliani’s material. For example, they had already examined a laptop owned by Mr. Biden and an external hard drive that had been abandoned at a computer store in Wilmington and found nothing to advance the inquiry.”

The Times had previously reported that “as part of the F.B.I.’s closely held money-laundering investigation into [Hunter] Biden, agents working with federal prosecutors in Delaware authorized a federal grand jury subpoena and obtained the laptop and an external hard drive.” In seizing the laptop and external hard drive from the Delaware repair store, the FBI’s receipt confirming the seizure “included an F.B.I. code, 272D, the bureau’s internal classification for money laundering investigations, and ‘BA’ for its Baltimore field office.” (The FBI’s Baltimore field office supports the Delaware’s U.S. Attorney’s office.) But, according to the Times’ sources, “the F.B.I. examined the laptop but that its contents did not advance the money-laundering investigation.”

An FBI Leak

But now, some two years later, we know that the Times reporting is factually incorrect, which even the New York legacy outlet’s coverage earlier this year confirms, in two respects. First, the “money laundering” aspect of the Delaware inquiry into Hunter Biden had not “fizzled out,” but according to their sources remains a part of the Delaware U.S. attorney’s grand jury investigation. And second, the laptop contained evidence supportive of the money-laundering probe and potentially other crimes.

Yet in 2020, five officials told the Times a different story, and some further claimed that in response to the Pittsburgh U.S. attorney’s investigation, FBI agents “found ways to ostensibly satisfy Mr. Brady,” raising questions of how precisely they thwarted his investigation.

When coupled with what the multiple whistleblowers, including some in senior positions, told Grassley, it appears the FBI headquarters either improperly withheld information or presented inaccurate information to the U.S. attorney’s office in Pittsburgh and possibly also Delaware.

And what better way to hide that fact than for FBI headquarters to leak to the New York Times that the laptop held nothing nefarious and to portray any investigative findings coming from the Pittsburgh U.S. attorney’s office as politically suspect? With that narrative in place, other FBI agents, including those supporting the Delaware U.S. attorney’s office investigation, would have no reason to question FBI headquarters’ claims that evidence was “disinformation.” 

What other purpose would the leaks to the Times serve? With a Biden election, a new slate of U.S. attorneys would soon be on the job, so the political hit on Brady made no sense at that late date. Similarly, many of the complaints aired in the December 2020 piece by the Times’ sources concerned fears that Brady or his team would influence the November 2020 election by leaking details of the investigation, but with the election over and without any leaks, that criticism rang hollow. 

But if the five unnamed officials knew they had withheld information from the Pittsburgh and Delaware U.S. attorney’s offices related to the investigation into the Biden family and/or had improperly closed down sources and evidentiary trails as alleged by the whistleblowers, then creating the public perception that there is “no there, there” would help hide this reality. 

So as Grassley proceeds with his investigation into the whistleblowers’ allegations, he should also assess whether FBI headquarters withheld or provided inaccurate information to the two U.S. attorney’s offices that had been charged with investigating Hunter Biden and his family business dealings. More significantly, with the Delaware U.S. attorney’s office still investigating Biden, it is imperative that prosecutors there — or better yet, a special counsel — review all evidence gathered by the Pittsburgh office and any files touched by FBI headquarters to ensure the integrity of the investigation. 

Former U.S. Attorney Scott Brady and Delaware U.S. Attorney David C. Weiss both declined to comment in response to inquiries by The Federalist. Grassley’s office, however, confirmed to The Federalist that the senator has not spoken with either the Pittsburgh or the Delaware U.S. attorney’s offices about the whistleblowers’ allegations.


Margot Cleveland is The Federalist’s senior legal correspondent. She is also a contributor to National Review Online, the Washington Examiner, Aleteia, and Townhall.com, and has been published in the Wall Street Journal and USA Today. Cleveland is a lawyer and a graduate of the Notre Dame Law School, where she earned the Hoynes Prize—the law school’s highest honor. She later served for nearly 25 years as a permanent law clerk for a federal appellate judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Cleveland is a former full-time university faculty member and now teaches as an adjunct from time to time. As a stay-at-home homeschooling mom of a young son with cystic fibrosis, Cleveland frequently writes on cultural issues related to parenting and special-needs children. Cleveland is on Twitter at @ProfMJCleveland. The views expressed here are those of Cleveland in her private capacity.

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Read The Most Savage Reactions To The FBI’s Self-Important Birthday Tweet

The FBI announced its birthday on Twitter on Tuesday to a host of hilarious and ruthless responses.

The bureau was celebrating being 114 years old, but plenty of Twitter users aren’t wishing them many more. The FBI’s growing reputation of federal corruption, such as its suppression of Hunter Biden’s laptop as “disinformation” and its 2016 election meddling, among many other malevolent actions, dimmed many Twitter users’ birthday wishes.

The post generated a host of memes and complaints in response. American Greatness reporter Deb Heine replied to the post with a meme from the British comedy show, “That Mitchell and Webb Look,” where two Nazi officers realize they’re the bad guys.

Scott Darley responded with a meme from “The Simpsons.”

A user who calls herself Orwell Huxley’s Ghost replied with “Job well done,” followed by an eye-roll emoji and a Sandra Bullock “Bird Box” meme.

Another user responded with a soyjak meme.

Somebody else responded with a gif of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi awkwardly rubbing her knuckles together in excitement and the caption, ” Your master is pleased with your obedience to punish her enemies.”

This reply included a misshapen star with the quote, “your did it.”

Heretic replied to the FBI’s post with a photo of black smoke billowing from Mount Carmel after the Waco massacre, asking, “Yo, this you?”

Connor replied, “Good try,” with a gif from “The Office” that included the caption, “Sure, if you say so.”

Another Twitter user responded with a gif from the movie “Dodgeball” with the caption: “That’s a bold strategy, Cotton. Let’s see if it pays off for them.”

Memes and gifs were not the only tools Twitter users employed to take down the FBI a peg or two; many responded with sharp comments. Albob reposted a February tweet from Jack Posobiec, saying, “Maybe we should tell the FBI the Epstein clients donated to the Freedom Convoy so they actually do something about them.”

Another responded, “Please don’t arrest me when I attend my local school board meeting!”

Stemwinder replied to the birthday post, “How hard were you laughing when you wrote this tweet?”

And last but not least, J Last asked, “Is J Edgar Hoover’s dress in the main office?”


Beth Whitehead is an intern at The Federalist and a journalism major at Patrick Henry College where she fondly excuses the excess amount of coffee she drinks as an occupational hazard.

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FBI Sabotaged Hunter Biden Probe To Derail Investigation


FBI Sabotaged Hunter Biden Probe To Derail Investigation

FBI Whistleblowers

ZH

Several FBI whistleblowers say that the agency’s probe into Hunter Biden was internally sabotaged during the 2020 election in order to derail the investigation, after agents wrongfully deemed verified evidence as “disinformation” to ignore.

According to Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA), agents investigating Hunter “opened an assessment which was used by an FBI headquarters team to improperly discredit negative Hunter Biden information as disinformation and caused investigative activity to cease,” adding that his office received “a significant number of protected communications from highly credible whistleblowers” regarding the investigation.

Grassley added that “verified and verifiable derogatory information on Hunter Biden was falsely labeled as disinformation,” according to the Washington Examiner.

FBI supervisory intelligence agent Brian Auten opened in August 2020 the assessment that was later used by the agency, according to the disclosures. One of the whistleblowers claimed the FBI assistant special agent in charge of the Washington field office, Timothy Thibault, shut down a line of inquiry into Hunter Biden in October 2020 despite some of the details being known to be true at the time.

A whistleblower also said Thibault “ordered closed” an “avenue of additional derogatory Hunter Biden reporting,” according to Grassley, even though “all of the reporting was either verified or verifiable via criminal search warrants.” The senator said Thibault “ordered the matter closed without providing a valid reason as required” and that FBI officials “subsequently attempted to improperly mark the matter in FBI systems so that it could not be opened in the future,” according to the disclosures.

The whistleblowers say investigators from FBI headquarters were “in communication with FBI agents responsible for the Hunter Biden information targeted by Mr. Auten’s assessment,” and that their findings on whether the claims were in fact disinformation were placed “in a restricted access sub-file” in September 2020, according to Grassley, who added that the disclosures “appear to indicate that there was a scheme in place among certain FBI officials to undermine derogatory information connected to Hunter Biden by falsely suggesting it was disinformation.

Grassley summarized the new allegations in a Monday letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland and FBI Director Christopher Wray.

The Examiner notes that FBI agent Auten was involved in the Trump-Russia investigation, including interviewing Christopher Steele’s primary source, Igor Danchenko.

According to Grassley, the “volume and consistency” of the allegations regarding the handling of the Hunter Biden probe “substantiate their credibility.”

The assessment by Auten in August 2020 was opened the same month Grassley and Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) received a briefing from the FBI “that purportedly related to our Biden investigation and a briefing for which the contents were later leaked in order to paint the investigation in a false light,” Grassley said. The senator said Senate Democrats asked for a briefing in July 2020 “from the very same FBI HQ team that discredited the derogatory Hunter Biden information.”

The FBI inquiry into Hunter Biden reportedly began as a tax investigation, then expanded into a scrutiny of potential money-laundering and foreign lobbying; the DOJ has declined to hand over investigative details. -Washington Examiner

Thibault, the FBI agent who allegedly quashed the Hunter probe, may have violated the Hatch act in 2020 after making posts on social media which were critical of then-president Donald Trump and former AG William Barr.

Joe Biden, top Democrats, and virtually the entire mainstream media dismissed the Hunter Biden laptop story as Russian dis-information when bombshell allegations from the New York Post emerged weeks before the 2020 election. In March 2021, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence released a report claiming that figures tied to Russian intelligence promoted “misleading or unsubstantiated allegations” about Joe Biden.

View Grassley to Garland and Wray Scribd Document here

*********

(TLB) published this article from ZeroHedge as written and compiled by Tyler Durden

Header featured image (edited) credit:  Hunter Biden/greatgameindia.com  /hunter-biden

Emphasis added by (TLB) editors

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Grassley Blasts FBI, DOJ As ‘Corrupted To Their Very Core’ After Whistleblowers Allege Biden Family Business Coverup

The FBI and Department of Justice are under scrutiny for applying a double standard of justice to their political enemies and prematurely closing investigations — specifically into Hunter Biden — that could yield information that would hurt their preferred political outcomes. In a scathing letter addressed to Attorney General Merrick Garland and FBI Director Christopher Wray on Monday, Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley detailed how partisanship has long tainted how the FBI and DOJ conduct their investigations.

“Attorney General Garland and Director Wray, simply put, based on the allegations that I’ve received from numerous whistleblowers, you have systemic and existential problems within your agencies,” Grassley said. “You have an obligation to the country to take these allegations seriously, immediately investigate and take steps to institute fixes to these and other matters before you.”

Relying on reports from “highly credible” whistleblowers in both government agencies, Grassley specifically explained how the FBI sought to “improperly discredit negative Hunter Biden information as disinformation and caused investigative activity to cease.” Because of the actions of several high-ranking federal officials, Grassley said, “verified and verifiable derogatory information on Hunter Biden was falsely labeled as disinformation.”

“The aforementioned allegations put a finer point on concerns that I have raised for many years about political considerations infecting the decision-making process at the Justice Department and FBI,” Grassley wrote. “If these allegations are true and accurate, the Justice Department and FBI are — and have been — institutionally corrupted to their very core to the point in which the United States Congress and the American people will have no confidence in the equal application of the law.”

Grassley wrote both Garland and Wray in May to warn them of “likely violations of Federal laws, regulations, and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) guidelines” by Assistant Special Agent in Charge Timothy Thibault, who hails from the Washington Field Office. According to that letter on May 31, the high-ranking, veteran FBI agent “demonstrated a pattern of active public partisanship” on his social media that “is likely a violation of his ethical obligations as an FBI employee.”

A letter from Grassley on July 18 detailed how Thibault’s political partisanship actually “went much deeper than the inappropriate social media posts” and “impacted his official decision-making on sensitive public corruption investigations.”

After Grassley called on whistleblowers to come forward about corruption, they disclosed to the senator that “Thibault declined to open or approve investigations based on partisan objectives notwithstanding the existence of proper predication,” including, as Grassley noted in his most recent letter, “an avenue of additional derogatory Hunter Biden reporting.” Thibault also allegedly tried to “improperly mark the matter in FBI systems so that it could not be opened in the future.”

As Grassley noted, it is Congress’s “constitutional responsibility” to “investigate the Executive Branch for fraud, waste, abuse and gross mismanagement — acts which undermine faith in the American people’s governmental institutions.”

That’s why the senator gave Garland and Wray until Aug. 8 to supply his office with records “related to derogatory information on Hunter Biden, James Biden, and their foreign business relationships,” as well as information about the agents who allegedly improperly closed investigations into the Biden family business.

Grassley did not touch on the DOJ or FBI’s previous known abuses, but it’s clear from the tone of his letter that he believes this is a problem deeply rooted in both agencies, having affected multiple presidential elections and hampered Americans’ confidence in the government.

“This double standard in the application of Justice Department and FBI policies has resulted in investigations opened in a manner appearing to benefit the political aims and objectives of a select few Justice Department and FBI officials,” Grassley wrote last week.


Jordan Boyd is a staff writer at The Federalist and co-producer of The Federalist Radio Hour. Her work has also been featured in The Daily Wire and Fox News. Jordan graduated from Baylor University where she majored in political science and minored in journalism. Follow her on Twitter @jordanboydtx.

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